The announcement of a $1.73 million package of family and social measures for Alice Springs backs up the Coordinator-General for Remote Indigenous Services’ criticisms of the Gillard Government’s piecemeal approach to Aboriginal Australia, the Shadow Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Senator Nigel Scullion, said today.
“These measures announced by Jenny Macklin are only for two schools in Alice Springs – what about the rest of the schools in the Territory or other Aboriginal communities across the country,” Senator Scullion said.
“The fourth six-monthly report issued by the Coordinator-General for Remote Indigenous Services said the government had no plan to help Indigenous people and was doing things in a piecemeal fashion.
“This announcement by the Minister is another case-in-point what the Coordinator-General was talking about.
“Why only run these programs in these two schools in Alice Springs – why should other schools in the Territory miss out?
“Minister Macklin spruiked the virtues of it – if it is so good why not make it across the board?
“A cynical person may think there is an election around the corner with a cash splash announcement like this.
“Does Jenny Macklin know something about a Kevin Rudd comeback, or a move to knife Julia Gillard for Stephen Smith, and is already in campaign mode?
“With the release of the Stronger Futures in the Northern Territory report, the Labor Government has finally realised after four years the programs implemented by the Coalition during the intervention in the Northern Territory can work.
“The Coalition had children attending school but Labor let it slip backwards while spinning their wheels for four years and another generation of uneducated Indigenous primary school children is Labor’s legacy.
“It is galling for the Minister to now try and gloat about piecemeal and uncoordinated programs to help educate Aboriginal children given that appalling legacy,” Senator Scullion said.
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Alice Springs cash splash shows government has no real plan to help Indigenous people.pdf